Standard for First Aid Kits Revised

To determine what first aid supplies are needed on a jobsite, the employer needs to consider the uniqueness of the work environment and the types of potential injuries.

That’s according to the recently revised American National Standards Institute/International Safety Equipment Association standard Z308.1, a credible and relied-upon source of non-mandatory guidance for minimum first aid kit requirements. ANSI/ISEA Z308.1-2021 was approved April 15 of this year and goes into effect Oct. 15.

Important among the standard’s revisions:

  • More prescriptive language stipulating tourniquets should be at least 1.5 inches wide and be effective for limb sizes 7-33 inches around.
  • Foil blankets became mandatory to bring Z308 into harmonization with international standards, but also recognizing the blanket’s utility in a variety of first aid scenarios.
  • More emphasis on bleeding control kits for treatment of life-threatening external bleeding.

The revision retains the classification of “Class A” and “Class B” kits, which is based on the quantity and assortment of supplies. Notably for tree care and landscape employers, Class B kits are intended to treat injuries more often found in densely populated workplaces with complex and/or high-risk environments, such as outdoor work areas.

Employers are encouraged to inspect first aid kits “at least monthly” or “following a first aid incident when product is used.”

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